Davy Jones graduated from Walla Walla Community College’s (WWCC) farrier science program in 1987, and he’s been part of the program since.
A competition roper, horse trainer, farrier and shoeing instructor, Jones also makes his own saddles, bits and spurs, according to the Union-Bulletin.
Jones grew up shoeing horses with his father. At age 5, he helped crank oxygen into his father’s forge — once so eagerly that he melted a few shoes with resulting flames.
At the time, he told his father that he’d never be able to shoe horses. Jones’s father told him that if he wanted to ride, he’d have to shoe. So, when his mother insisted that he go to college, he enrolled in WWCC’s farrier program.
He went on to help Scott Simpson, another iconic shoer and educator, run the program. He maintains that role part-time, working with current instructor Jeff Engler.
Jones and Engler help WWCC students shoe 800-1,000 horses each year. Through a 33-week program there, students can earn a certificate, or a degree after 66 weeks. The average farrier program is only 8-12 weeks long.
“Our students leave here after 2 years with as much experience and knowledge as a farrier who’s been in the field for 5 years,” Engler says.
Anthony Paul — a December 2017 graduate of the program — enrolled in WWCC’s farrier program when he found out he would work with Jones and Engler.
Now, Paul works for the farrier that shoes Bill Gates daughter’s horses and top-ranking competitors.
“Meeting these riders, it’s a humbling experience,” he says.
Paul also recognized his former classmate D.J. Morgan.
“We’re all very proud of him because he just competed in World Championship Blacksmiths and now he’s ranked 20th in the world in the novice class,” he says.
Jones thinks that the program and its successful students are something special.
“I don’t think there’s another program in the world like this one,” Jones says.